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Poster: Scott Saunders Date: Feb 15, 2013 6:42pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: New movie serials to upload and request for help

Mike, first thanks yet again for all your help and this is my last question. I found the link you sent me for the PD checks. I did Scouts to the Rescue 1939 and got the following result.

http://cocatalog.loc.gov/cgi-bin/Pwebrecon.cgi?Search_Arg=Scouts+to+the+Rescue%09&;Search_Code=TALL&PID=k61Qwpq7hiA1g-tQSr4cxcFLZ19kvW&SEQ=20130215213904&CNT=25&HIST=1

I'm not sure how to interpret that. It looks like that serial might be PD. I don't see a renewal date or am I reading that wrong?

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Poster: anh Mike Date: Feb 17, 2013 10:28am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: New movie serials to upload and request for help

ask someone to search the copyright books for that year the US copyright office website does not go that far back only 1975.

Michael

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Poster: larus Date: Feb 19, 2013 2:17am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: New movie serials to upload and request for help

The US Copyright Office online database only contains registrations made in or after 1978.

For films published before 1950, you need to use the Catalog of Copyright Entries published by the USCO.
First, you need to look up the original registration from the US Copyright Office's cumulative Catalog of Copyright Entries for motion pictures (there are four of them, covering the years 1912-1939, 1940-1949, 1950-1959 and 1960-1969)

Here is the original registration for Scouts to the rescue:
SCOUTS TO THE RESCUE. 1938-39.
Universal Pictures Co., Inc.
Credits: Directors, Ray Taylor, Alan
James; original story, Irving Crump;
screenplay, Wyndham Gittens, George
Plympton, Basil Dickey, Joseph Poland.
1. Death Rides the Air. 28Nov38;
LP8449.
2. Avalanche of Doom. 28Nov38;
LP8450.
3. Trapped by the Indians. 5Dec38;
LP8470.
4. River of Doom. 12Dec38; LP8487.
5. Descending Doom. 12Dec38;
LP8488.
6. Ghost Town Menace. 23Dec38;
LP8504.
7. Destroyed by Dynamite. 31Dec38;
LP8546.
8. Thundering Hoofs! 31Dec38; LP8547.
9. The Fire God Strikes. 31Dec38;
LP8548.
10. The Battle at Ghost Town. 18Jan39;
LP8555.
11. Hurtling Through Space. 18Jan39;
LP8556.
12. The Boy Scouts' Triumph. 26Jan39;
LP8581.
(1912-1939 cumulative Catalog of Copyright Entries, page 747)

Based on the original registration dates above, you can then compute the years in which renewals would have had to be filed and look them up in the relevant yearly Catalog of Copyright Entries.

For Scouts to the rescue, the relevant years are 1965 (1938+27) to 1967 (1939+28), and here are the renewals:

From the 1965 Catalog of Copyright Entries, page 125:
SCOUTS TO THE RESCUE, a series of photoplays
by Universal Pictures Co.
2 reels each. © Universal Pictures
Co., Inc. (PWH)
Chapter
1. Death rides the air. © 28N0V38;
LP8449. lDec55; R375614.
2. Avalanche of doom. © 28Nov38;
LP8450. lDeo65; R375613.


And from the 1966 Catalog of Copyright Entries, page 41:

SCOUTS TO THE RESCUE, a series of photoplays
by Universal Pictures Co.
2 reels each. © Universal Pictures
Co., Inc. (PWH)
The battle at ghost town. © 18Jan39;
LP8555. 4Feb66; R379439.
The Boy Scouts' triumph. © 26Jan39;
LP8581. 4Feb66; R379442.
Hurtling through space. © l8jan39;
LP8556. 4Feb66; R379MO.

SCOUTS TO THE RESCUE, a series of photoplays
by Universal Pictures Co.
2 reels each. © Universal Pictures
Co., Inc. (PWH)
Chapter
3. Trapped by the Indians. © 5Dec38;
LP8470. HJan66; R377763.
4. River of the doom. © 12Dec38;
LP8487. HJan66; R377765.
5- Descending doom. © 12Dec38;
LP8488. HJan66; R377766.
6. Ghost town menace. © 23Dec38;
LP8504. HJan66; R377769.
7. Destroyed by dynamite. © 31Dec38;
LP8546. HJan66; R377775-
8. Thundering hoofs. © 31Dec38;
LP8547. HJan66; R377776.
9. The fire god strikes. © 31Dec38;
LP8548. HJan66; R377774.


One of the problems with the yearly Catalog of Copyright Entries available on the archive is that the Optical Character Recognition process used to convert the scans to text is a bit dodgy, which can affect text search. For example, the OCR process garbled some instances of "Uviersal Pictures" into "Universal Pitcores" in the 1976 CCEs, so searching for "Universal Pictures" will cause you to mmiss some records where the OCR process thought the text was "Universal Pictores".
As a result, if you don't find a title in a CCE, it may be because the text got garbled. Or maybe a part of the page is missing or torn. Consequently, the only way to be sure a title isn't listed is sometimes to check the alphabetical indexes for the January-June and July-December sections of the CCE.

Finally, registrations for a certain year may appear in the CCE for a later year (for example, the 1977 CCE contains some renewals dated 1976). It's fairly rare but it does happen, so if no renewal registration is found in the expected time frame, it doesn't hurt to check the CCEs for one extra year.